• La Moda Mexicana: Fonda (Swan Street, Richmond)

Mexican food seems to be all the rage in Melbourne now.  I became somewhat sceptical after my friend advised that burritos are actually Texan (not Mexican) and having read this post by Burger Mary on the marketing ploy of claiming cuisines without staying true to the essence.  Asking Google this morning, the history of the burrito seems to have a different story for each different website.  But what can I say, I am vegetarian, so all meals have somehow been adapted – otherwise I would just be eating lettuce leaves, and no one wants to see a grumpy Elisa in need of carbs and protein?  And in the end, isn’t the real question whether the food tastes good or not?  So Mexican, Texan or Australian;  whatever it is, the food at Fonda was delightful.

It was our last dance class of the year on Monday – and after my girls had been working so hard to become fabulous dancers, we all wanted to celebrate.  I chose Fonda 1) because I had never been there before, 2) it was well priced, 3) it was right near the dance studio.

We called up before walking down, and in perfect timing a table for 6 had just been cleared – there are no bookings and even on a Monday night, it was packed.  We were squished onto a table out the back where we could admire the innovative plant decorations.

I ordered the vegetarian burrito and the corn.   We also had a bowl of chips to share, which became 3 bowls after tasting them – the chips were crunchy but it was the delicious chipotle aioli that tipped us over the edge. There is also a vegetarian taco on the menu with zucchini, minted peas, salsa verde and lime.

The burrito was perfectly balanced between the density of beans and the lightness of the silverbeet and avocado.  It also had chunks of corn and a ‘smokey relish’, the latter being subtle enough for me to put more hot sauce on top.  If it were not for the chips, the meal would have been considered healthy – even by vegetarian standards.

The corn was delicious.  I had seen the rows of halved corn cobs behind the counter, and within minutes they had charred them, added chipotle aioli, ricotta salata and a spherical segment of lime.

In fact all the food arrived quickly.  And we devoured our dishes as speedily as they were prepared.

I don’t know what was in the meals, but we were all so happy afterwards, giggling and telling humorous stories.  The mood and staff were relaxed enough for us to enjoy conversation and before long it was dark and it seemed close time was approaching.

Everyone enjoyed the food, and I was pleased to discover a new hang-out.


248 Swan Street  
Richmond 3121
03 9429 0085

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